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Strong year for PINT despite widening discount

Cordiant Digital Infrastructure CORD

Pantheon Infrastructure (PINT) announced its annual results for the period ended 31 December 2023. NAV total return for the year was 10.4% while shares fell over 10%, causing a considerable widening of the discount, which stood at 30% at the time of publishing. Notably, the company has now fully deployed its funds into a portfolio of infrastructure assets, having invested in or committed £487m to thirteen assets. The company announced three new investments during the year totalling £96m: European towers business GD Towers, Nordic fibre operator GlobalConnect, and UK based battery storage and electric bus fleet specialist Zenobē. During the year, the company also announced:

  • An increased revolving credit facility to £115m, extended to March 2027 after the year end, increasing available liquidity.
  • £5.8m of share buybacks during the year and a further £2.6m after the year end, increasing NAV by 0.5p per share.
  • Refreshed buyback programme, after the year end, for up to £10m going forward.

Despite the discount, the company remains positive with chair Vagn Sørensen, noting: “PINT’s impressive performance, despite the economic challenges of the last year, such as fluctuations in inflation, interest rates, and valuation discount rates, speaks volumes. The resilience of PINT’s portfolio is further enhanced by its geographical and sector split, ensuring increased diversification and mitigating ongoing risks and uncertainty effectively. The dedication and discipline of the team, backed by tried and tested investment processes, have played a crucial role in overcoming obstacles and enabling PINT to continue to deliver against its objectives.”

Richard Sem, Partner at Pantheon, PINT’s investment manager, added: “Reflecting on our achievements amid challenging market conditions this past year, it is very rewarding to have been able to deliver on our stated strategy for investors. PINT’s thematic approach to investment, gaining exposure to assets and companies backed by long-term secular trends, is underpinned by Pantheon’s robust processes, risk management, patience and price discipline. We are particularly pleased to have fully deployed our funds and exceeded our pre-IPO NAV total return target – and we look forward to continuing to build value for our investors over the long term by providing access to a diversified portfolio of high-quality, global infrastructure assets.”

Regarding the outlook for the company, Sørensen continued:

“Infrastructure remains a key driver of economic growth, and therefore the need for investment into new infrastructure is arguably stronger than ever. Indeed, in the current environment, private investment is especially needed, and we believe will be ultimately rewarded, at a time where governments are facing significant budget deficits and rising debt levels.

“The last six months or so have seen an even greater international focus on decarbonisation. According to the World Meteorological Organization, 2023 was the warmest year on record, and the annual average global temperature approached 1.5°C above pre-industrial levels. The road to net zero globally requires sustained and extraordinary investment in new infrastructure. Private infrastructure has demonstrated a necessary role in filling that gap, and we believe it will continue to play an important part in funding global infrastructure investments.

“The market for infrastructure investment remains competitive, and despite some recent signs of recovery, fundraising in private markets was challenging in 2023. PINT’s strategy continues to be to identify and target companies that are set to benefit from key sectoral tailwinds, whilst exhibiting defensive characteristics and delivering growth in real terms across the economic cycle. Pantheon’s wide capability to source new investments through its vast network and established partnerships, as demonstrated since PINT’s launch, is all the more crucial in current market conditions. The board remains optimistic about PINT’s future investment opportunities and value creation potential.

“With this in mind, and as already stated, we believe that the current level of discount is unjustified, and represents a compelling value opportunity for those seeking to invest into a fully deployed and diversified portfolio of high-quality infrastructure assets.

“Currently, it appears that much of the market is focusing purely on yield from gilts and bonds without considering prospects for capital appreciation. We continue to believe that PINT’s strategy means it is well positioned for when investors again start to recognise the importance of growth potential in a well-balanced investment strategy, and have been further encouraged by the increased awareness relating to the ongoing cost disclosures issues affecting AIFMs, which may in time provide further buying stimulus in a market showing signs of recovery. The Board is confident of the Manager’s ability to continue to source new assets and to manage the existing portfolio to deliver that growth. We also believe that infrastructure assets will provide much-needed resilience in the current uncertain world.”

PINT : Strong year for PINT despite widening discount

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